Tags: NPR | New CEO

Next NPR CEO Is Longtime 'Sesame Street' Honcho

Sunday, 02 Oct 2011 07:40 PM

 

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink

WASHINGTON (AP) — The man who helped bring "Sesame Street" to a global audience for the past 11 years will take over as president and CEO of NPR, the public radio network announced Sunday.

Gary Knell, the longtime president and CEO of Sesame Workshop, will start at NPR on Dec. 1.

Knell succeeds Vivian Schiller, who resigned under pressure in March after a former NPR fundraiser was caught on camera calling the tea party racist. The episode led some conservatives to call for an end to federal funding for NPR, but Congress ultimately retained the funds as part of a budget deal in April.

Schiller was also criticized for firing analyst Juan Williams over comments he made about Muslims.

Knell, 57, told The Associated Press on Sunday that he wanted to "depoliticize" NPR by highlighting its commitment to hard-hitting local, national and international journalism across multiple platforms. He said he does not believe that NPR is biased and wants to try to change the minds of those who perceive it as such.

"I think NPR needs to do a better job of telling a story," Knell said. "It's about journalism, it's about news. It's not about promoting one political agenda or another."

NPR's board of directors voted unanimously to hire Knell after a national search that included help from an outside firm.

"Gary is an extraordinary leader with extensive experience in public media, programming and education," board chairman Dave Edwards said in a statement. "As CEO of Sesame Workshop for more than a decade, he has led a large, complex organization through a tumultuous media environment, helping it grow by providing innovative, engaging content in new and creative ways."

At Sesame Workshop, Knell created co-productions in South Africa, India, Northern Ireland and Egypt and made the organization's programming available on a variety of digital platforms.

"Despite the fact that it may appear that I'm a guy who's doing puppet shows, that's not really true," Knell said. "It's a complex media organization that's global in size."

He said NPR was one of the few organizations that has a "bigger impact on the world," and that's why he was interested in the job.

Nikki Usher, an assistant professor at the George Washington University school of media and public affairs who has studied NPR extensively, said Knell was a smart hire.

"Public broadcasting is a world that sort of demands that you know a lot about the way that things get financed," Usher said. "I think it's a really good decision to go with someone who's inside public broadcasting because of the difficult situation that public broadcasting is in."

© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Retype Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

Joan Rivers in Medically Induced Coma After Cardiac Arrest: Report

Thursday, 28 Aug 2014 19:45 PM

Comic Joan Rivers was hospitalized in critical condition Thursday morning after she reportedly went into cardiac arrest  . . .

Another Flight Diverts in Reclined-Seat Flap

Thursday, 28 Aug 2014 19:21 PM

An outburst over a reclined seat led an American Airlines flight to divert to Boston, at least the second such incident  . . .

NFL to Ban 2nd-Time Domestic Violence Offenders

Thursday, 28 Aug 2014 16:18 PM

NFL players will be subject to a six-week suspension for a first domestic violence offense and banishment from the leagu . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved